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Trump slams 'bull' legal cases at Michigan rally

Former President Trump used his day off from court in New York City on Wednesday to slam the criminal cases against him as “bullshit,” during one of his first battlefield events since his trial.

Trump spoke to supporters in Freeland, Michigan, where he detailed his legal troubles and attacked the judges who handled his criminal and civil cases in New York. The former president claimed his own charges were a “badge of honor” as he wanted to use the charges against him to rally his base ahead of the November election.

“Every one of these fake cases is nonsense. Every single one of them. “Terrible,” Trump said to the roar of the crowd.

“As you know, I came here today from New York City, where I am forced to sit for days in a terrible courtroom with a corrupt and contradictory judge and endure a side trial against Biden by a Marxist district attorney … the orders of the Biden government receives,” Trump continued.

Trump is on trial in New York City on allegations that he falsified business records related to an alleged hush-money scheme to cover up an affair during the 2016 campaign. He must appear in court four days a week, with Wednesdays and weekends off. There is no evidence that President Biden or the White House were involved in bringing charges against Trump.

The former president called the trial in New York City “an unlawful exercise in very stupid and very evil politics.” But Trump noted that his legal troubles have done little to shake his position in polls that show him leading Biden in battleground states. In Michigan, which Biden won in 2020, Trump is ahead by 4 percentage points, according to a polling average from Decision Desk HQ.

“These charges are not just an attack on me, they are an attack on the constitutional rights of all Americans,” Trump said. “The final verdict on this travesty will be made not in the courtroom but at the ballot box. And the American people will find the corrupt Joe Biden guilty of attempting to destroy our country.”

Trump called Judge Juan Merchan, who is presiding over the hush money trial, “crooked and contradictory” and complained about a gag order that prevents Trump from attacking witnesses in the case and family members of court staff. Merchan on Tuesday fined Trump $9,000 for repeated violations of the gag order.

The former president later targeted Judge Arthur Engoron, who was presiding over a civil fraud case over Trump's business practices, and ordered him to pay nearly $355 million.

Trump also reprimanded the judge in a libel case involving writer E. Jean Carroll, at the end of which a jury ordered Trump to pay $83.3 million for defaming Carroll by dismissing her claims of sexual assault Longtime Elle columnist came forward in 2019.

The former president did not specifically address the allegations against him in Washington, D.C. and Georgia for attempting to undermine the 2020 election results, nor the allegations he faced in Florida over his handling of classified documents after he left the US office is confronted.

“The fact is that the vote on November 5th is the most important vote to me because it will turn out to be the most important day in the history of our country and we will get things right,” Trump said.

The event in Michigan was the second rally of the day for Trump, who also spoke to supporters in Wisconsin. It was the first time Trump visited a battleground state since he went on trial in mid-April. A previously planned rally in North Carolina was canceled due to severe weather.

Trump used the events to lay out some of his plans for a second term, including a promise to close the southern border and order the mass deportation of immigrants who entered the U.S. illegally.

The former president said he would seek to extend his 2017 tax law, which is set to expire in 2025 and which critics have argued has disproportionately helped wealthy Americans and corporations. Trump said he would halt spending through the Inflation Reduction Act, a law passed with only Democratic votes in 2022 that invests in climate-friendly industries and lowers the cost of prescription drugs.

Trump said he would expand drilling even as U.S. oil production hit record highs last year.

At both rallies, the former president also spoke about abortion, an issue that could prove to be a major vulnerability for Trump in November. The former president repeatedly called for the end of Roe v. by appointing three conservative Supreme Court justices. Wade embraced it and said abortion policy should be left to the states.

Trump said during his rally in Wisconsin that people are “absolutely thrilled” with the way states are handling abortion policy, even though states like Florida have passed restrictive laws that have made it harder for millions of women to get a legal abortion.

“The states decide. And some people are unhappy because the policy is too liberal or too conservative, but we brought it back to the states where it needs to be,” Trump said. “And over a longer period of time it works. And it cleared up a lot of controversy, and it was a good thing.

“You have to go with your heart. You have to do what is right. But you also have to be elected,” Trump added. “Because if you don't get elected, a lot of bad things will happen that go beyond the abortion issue. A lot of very bad things are going to happen, from taxes to the military to everything else. So it was very interesting to watch the process.”

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Anna Harden

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